Paula Galhardo

Paula A. Galhardo

Of Counsel

Paula Galhardo is an of counsel in the Corporate Practice and member of the firm’s Latin America Executive Committee, with particular expertise in international transaction matters pertaining to inbound Brazilian investment in the US, outbound US investment into Latin America, international contracts, and anticorruption compliance and investigations with a particular focus on Latin America.

Paula has extensive experience leading and coordinating complex international transactions across many jurisdictions and represents companies across a broad spectrum of industries, including chemicals, energy and technology, as well as manufacturers and government contractors. Currently, Paula is serving as regional counsel for a public chemical company in Latin America, which includes operations in Brazil, Chile, Argentina, Mexico and Colombia.

Paula’s experience also includes assisting clients in anticorruption compliance in Latin America. She assists in the review and revision of anticorruption policies and procedures and advises Brazilian entities on FCPA compliance, including company practices, internal compliance programs, human resources concerns and remedial measures for improving compliance.

Paula is the Chair of the International Law Section and Vice-Chair of the Corporate Counsel section of the Houston Bar Association. She is also an active member of a number of bar and trade associations, including the Association of International Petroleum Negotiators (AIPN), Institute for Energy Law (IEL), American Bar Association (ABA), New York State Bar Association (NYSBA), Brazilian Bar Association (OAB) and Young Professionals in Energy (YPE).

Paula is admitted to practice in Brazil and New York. Portuguese is her first language, and she is also fluent in both English and Spanish.


  • Serving as regional legal counsel in Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia and Mexico for a US publicly traded chemical company.
  • Representing a Spanish publicly traded company in its divestiture of a line of business in Brazil.
  • Acting as outside general counsel for a medium-sized, US-based drilling company.
  • Advising a procurement subsidiary of a major national oil company on US corporate and transaction matters.
  • Drafting and negotiating supply agreements and master service agreements with vendors on behalf of oil and gas exploration, and production companies.
  • Assisting in the registration of a publicly traded US-based company for oil concession with Colombian National Hydrocarbons Agency, including review of major contracts such as a host government agreement, joint operating agreement and a farm out agreement with an Asia-based company involved in the same concession.
  • Representing a US-based manufacturing company in the negotiation and documentation of a licensing agreement in Brazil.
  • Providing corporate representation of US-based clients, including corporate formations and contract drafting and review.
  • Advising on a joint venture between a major chemical company and a major oil company concerning review of major contracts, international corporate governance and commercial legal issues primarily related to Latin America operations and the development and implementation of a restructuring plan for operations in the US and Latin America.
  • Providing counsel to a rig services and construction company in the negotiation of a joint venture with a Brazil-based oilfield services company and a separate joint venture for the development of a deep water port facility adjacent to Brazil’s pre-salt field.
  • Assisting an Australia-based company with the acquisition and development of a mining operation in Colombia, including analysis of Colombia’s mining code.
  • Counseling one of the largest Brazil-based ethanol and sugar producers on corporate matters.
  • Designing compliance programs and training employees for multinational corporations in all areas of Brazil law including, contract, labor, antitrust, bidding and public-private partnership, and corporate matters.
  • Assisting in the acquisition of a Brazil-based sugar production company.


  • University of Houston, LL.M., 2007
  • Fundacao Getulio Vargas, Masters, Business and Corporate Law, 2004
  • Pontifical Catholic Univ of Rio de Janeiro, LL.B., 2003


  • New York, 2010
  • Brazil, 2003

Memberships and Affiliations

  • Chair of the International Law Section of the Houston Bar Association (HBA)
  • Vice-Chair of the Corporate Counsel section of the Houston Bar Association
  • Association of International Petroleum Negotiators – AIPN
  • Brazilian – American Chamber of Commerce
  • New York State Bar Association – NYSBA
  • Board Member of Institute for Energy Law – IEL
  • Brazilian Bar Association – OAB


  • Portuguese
  • English
  • Spanish

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